We’re Passionate About Preserving the Environment for all Canadians
6,760 beef farms
Over 896,000 beef cattle
2 million dedicated acres to pastures and hayfields
Ontario beef is not only produced sustainably, it can even have a positive impact on our environment. Beef cattle in Ontario spend the first part of their lives on pasture, and then they often spend a few months in feedlot barns where resources are used as efficiently as possible to reduce beef’s environmental footprint. This combination of pasture and feedlot, which is typical in Ontario, combines the resource efficiency of feedlot barns with the immense environmental benefits that come from pasture and other forms of tame grasslands.
Whether they are in a barn or on pasture, beef cattle’s diet always includes grass, forages and hay (which is dried grass). Beef production goes hand-in-hand with tame grasslands like pastures and hayfields, which provide wildlife habitat, carbon storage, soil health benefits, and more ecosystem benefits. The symbiotic relationship between grasslands and cattle has a measurable impact on the environment and the well-being of people.
4 Ways We’re Looking Out for the Environment
Every kg of beef produced in Canada uses around 1,150 litres, which is 17% less than 30 years ago. And most importantly, most of the water used comes directly from rainfall and is recycled via the land.
Pasture and hayfields have permanent root systems and provide ground cover, which helps filter nutrients and reduce soil erosion.
While most greenhouse gases in beef production come from methane produced in cattle’s gastrointestinal tract, these methane emissions are partially offset by grasslands. Innovations in feed, cattle management and other farming practices are also helping us reduce methane emissions.
Grasslands help mitigate climate change by sequestering and storing carbon mainly in the soil, with a slower turnover of carbon below ground. This leads to positive accumulation of organic matter.
Watch Environmental Sustainability
on Beef Farms
Let’s talk about the environmental value of Ontario beef
Ontario beef relies on grasslands: pastures and hay fields. We can’t produce beef without grasslands, which are recognized by government and environmental groups as extremely valuable environmental features on par with wetlands and forests. We’re proud to be caretakers of Ontario’s grasslands, which do so much more than produce beef. To better understand the impact […]
Caring for Land, Water, Air and Livestock
Ontario beef farmers Jackie and Steven talk about how they care for the environment, the water, the air and their animals on their farm.
Ontario Beef Farms and the Environment
Learn the facts about the positive impacts of beef farming on the environment here in Ontario.
Respecting the Land and the Livestock
Ontario beef farmers Paul and Carrie Anne De Jong talk about how they farm sustainably with respect for the land and their livestock.
Working with Nature to Care for the Land
As a nurse and an Ontario beef farmer, Sandra believes everything has a place in the world, and that it’s up to us to learn how to coexist with the nature around us.
Earthworms+– Farmer Series
Steve Sickle’s family started farming in Brantford two generations ago. When Steve took over the business from his dad, improving soil health on the farm was a first priority for him. To Steve, this meant the introduction of beef cattle. Beef cattle love grazing – they have ruminant stomachs after all – and grazing is […]
Grassland Birding Welcome
If you’re asked to think about birdwatching, what comes to mind? An image of a hopeful individual on the chase of a rare bird sighting, binoculars in hand? There is an earthy thrill to birdwatching that connects people with nature – an opportunity to see the elusive. Sadly, since 1970 the population of grassland birds […]